Yes, you read it right. We are talking about Achilles today! But, not about Achilles, the Greek hero of the Trojan War, who was all powerful but had a vulnerable heel. We are talking about the Achilles tendon or the heel cord. The Achilles tendon is a tendon in the back of your leg. It’s also the thickest in the body and attaches your calf muscles at the lower leg to your heel.
The term ‘Achilles heel’ refers to a weakness and is related to the mythical story of Achilles, who was killed in the Trojan War after being shot with a poisoned arrow on his heel.
Your heels are in fact vulnerable and undergo a great deal of stress and overuse though you may not come to know of it. Achilles tendonitis is an injury caused by overuse of the Achilles tendon. It is most common in young adults and people who are active in sports such as gymnastics, running, basketball, tennis and baseball. You will usually notice signs and symptoms immediately after an increase in activity level, inadequate stretching or running or jumping a lot. Women who wear tight shoes or regularly wear high heels can also suffer from Achilles Tendonitis. Other groups at risk include people who are obese, diabetes patients and those suffering from high blood pressure.
Achilles Tendonitis can be prevented to some extent by following the right fitness protocol:
- Regular stretching before and after any physical activity
- Wear shoes that are the correct size and fit
- Wear shoes with adequate support and cushioning
- Pain in back leg
- Pain above heel
- Increase in pain after any physical activity
- Stiffness in muscles
- Tendons that become enlarged
Home remedies can be extremely helpful for most cases of Achilles Tendonitis and can usually give you some immediate relief for pain management.
For Pain and Swelling:
- Apply a Cold Compress
- Apply a warm compress or a hot towel
For relaxation and blood circulation:
- Massage with coconut oil or olive oil to increase blood flow to the area
- Apply gentle pressure to relieve stiffness
- Stretching or yoga under an instructor
If home remedies and time do not provide sufficient relief or if your symptoms worsen, surgery may be necessary. If your symptoms do not improve within a few days, see a board certified podiatrist immediately.
Dr. Paul S. DeMarco is a board certified podiatrist who specializes in treating foot and ankle problems in Somers Point, New Jersey in adults and children. He will thoroughly evaluate your foot and ankle and check to see the range of motions present in the heel and the surrounding tendons.
Dr. Paul S. De Marco and his helpful staff will select the best procedure to relieve your Achilles Tendonitis pain based on the diagnosis.
Don’t delay and let your Achilles heel be your strength, not your weakness!
Call Dr. Paul S. De Marco today at 609-927-4894 or contact us through our online form.